LPGA: Brooke Henderson leads by 4 shots at midway point at Lake Nona


Brooke Henderson fired a 6-under 66 on Friday to take a four-shot lead over Nelly Korda at the midway point of the Tournament of Champions in Orlando, Fla.

Henderson carded six birdies during a bogey-free round at Lake Nona Golf and Country Club. She sits at 11-under 133 through 36 holes.

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Four of the birdies came consecutively at Nos. 2 through 5. The other two came on the back nine (Nos. 12, 15).

The 25-year-old Canadian led by one shot after the opening round but was able to expand it, as Korda shot 69 on Friday after an opening 68.

England’s Charley Hull and Chinese Taipei’s Wei-Ling Hsu are tied for third at 6-under 138. Both shot 69s on Friday.

The strong start at the event, which features 29 winners of LPGA events from 2021 and 2022, has been pleasing to Henderson.

“I think that’s the goal of probably everybody here, to get off to a hot start,” said Henderson, a 12-time LGPA winner. “I’m just grateful to be putting up good scores, lots of birdies, and it hasn’t been too many issues the last two days.

“So hopefully just going into the weekend I can just make a bunch of birdies, try to go low and see what happens.”

Another highlight of Henderson’s day was serving as the playing partner of LPGA legend Annika Sorenstam, who is playing in the celebrity division. It was the first time Henderson played with Sorenstam, a Hall of Famer who won 72 LPGA events.

“Just really special, and I feel like I’ll remember it forever,” Henderson said. “Just one of those opportunities of a lifetime. Like I said, we all look up to her out here on tour. … Obviously a great player, and I think we can all learn a lot from her.”

Korda had five birdies and two bogeys during her second trip around the course. Four of her birdies came on the back nine.

However, she was disturbed with her putting and said she was heading to the putting green for additional work once she completed her media responsibilities.

“I was actually a little frustrated with my round today,” Korda said. “I don’t think I was hitting or putting that good, especially on the front. I had a lot of opportunities. I think I was hitting it better on the front than I was the back, but then I was draining (putts) on the back, so it kind of switched on me.”

Sweden’s Maja Stark (68) and Japan’s Nasa Hataoka (68) are tied for fifth place at 5 under. Defending champion Danielle Kang (69) and Ireland’s Leona Maguire (69) are tied for seventh at 4 under.

Sorenstam is tied for second with amputee golfer Chad Pfeifer at 69 points in the celebrity division, which is using the Modified Stableford scoring system. Former tennis player Mardy Fish (78) holds the lead.

–Field Level Media

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